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NATO in Caucasus: stepping on the same rake2009-04-07 23:54
At the 60th Jubilee summit NATO member states signed a joint declaration expressing their concern over the situation in South Caucasus. The document aroused an adequate reaction in Moscow with Russia's envoy to NATO warning: the talk at the Russia-NATO Council meeting will be really tough.
"All parties must apply constructive efforts to ensure peaceful settlement of conflicts in South Caucasus, - the declaration text is presented by Regnum IA. - The alliance calls on all conflict parties not to take measures which can inflict damage to stability and security in the region and respect present framework of negotiations. We keep supporting territorial integrity and sovereignty of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Moldova". NATO members also advocated the OSCE mission extension "throughout all the territory of Georgia including Abkhazia and South Ossetia". The alliance also called on Russia to adhere to "all commitments towards Georgia" and reconsider decision on recognition of South Ossetia's and Abkhazia's independence.
A good start with a bad ending so to say. Against the background of "pushing a reset button" in Russia-USA and Russia-NATO relations documents of this kind are puzzling. The alliance speaks about new approaches and dialogue stepping on the same rake.
Though it seems Barack Obama dotted all the «i»s on March 3 giving the outline of current relations between Russia and the West: "NATO should acknowledge legitimate interests of Russia that has common interests with the alliance too, - RIA Novosti quotes the American president. - I believe we need to start the dialogue to ensure stability, respecting autonomy and independence of all European countries in the West, East and in the center - wherever. I think Russia should get a signal that we are ready to work with them and we can't get back to the methods of the past".
Either the allies did not study Obama's address well enough or Europe suddenly decided to display its self-sufficiency - the fact remains: the form and the content of the NATO declaration do not indicate new methods but on the contrary stick to the worst traditions of the recent past.
No wonder Tbilisi welcomed the document. According to David Bakradze, Chairman of Georgian Parliament the declaration is "a confirmation of the fact that the USA and NATO fully respect Georgia's territorial integrity within internationally acknowledged borders of the state", - ITAR-TASS reports.